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Gambero Rosso, Vernazza

7 Piazza Marconi
Italy 19018
Tel: 39 01 8781 2265's insider take:

Right above Vernazza's small beach, next to the colorful fishing boats pulled up onto the slipway, this is one of the very few Cinque Terre waterside restaurants to maintain high culinary standards despite the tourist onslaught. The seafood practically lands on your plate from the sea and is prepared with a minimum of fuss in antipasti like moscardini (baby octopus) with crostini, or the marvelous paccheri al Gambero Rosso—short pasta tubes cooked al dente and dressed with a sauce of red mullet, herbs, and spices. Service is efficient, without the smarmy edge that mars not a few Cinque Terre dining experiences. It's not the cheapest meal on the coast, but it's a reliable option if you feel like splurging.

Open Tuesdays through Sundays noon to 3 pm and 7 to 10 pm.

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